I’m having trouble finding a contractor to build my new art studio, and in the meantime I don’t have a place to paint. Evidently it’s the busy time of year for contractors, and I haven’t found one who’s available right now. I realized it’s an opportunity to do some weaving, and I can warp my rigid heddle loom using two tables set up in the driveway. No studio space required!
I joined a rigid heddle loom study group, an offshoot of the Ventura County Handweavers and Spinners Guild, and our project for this month is to weave a scarf. I thought I would explore an asymmetrical Burberry type of plaid, using cotton yarns that I dyed with natural dyes made from plants.
The warp is measured by the distance between the two tables, in this case, about six feet, for a six-foot scarf. Actually it’s a little more than six feet, because there’s some waste at both ends of the warp, where the yarn is tied onto the front and back beams of the loom.
First the yarn is looped onto the back beam and threaded through the slots of the reed. Then every other thread is pulled through the holes in the reed using a heddle hook. This gives an over-and-under basket weave pattern.
The yarn is then tied onto the front beam.
I use kraft paper to weave the first six inches or so, to allow for fringe.
And I’m ready to start weaving!
So if you know of any good contractors in the Ventura area who are available, let me know. Right now it’s looking like it could be a several month wait, and I’d like to get the studio built before the rain starts and ruins everything I have stored in the garage. IF the rain starts! We should be so lucky, right!